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read the Learning Resource for Week 4, the Course Resource “Devil’s
Decade” and the lectures below, then participate in this discussion.
You need to post a direct response
sworn enemies, it is common to lump together Germany under Hitler and
the Soviet Union under Stalin as two examples of totalitarian
regimes. In analyzing these two phenomena, are their similarities or
differences more important? Some factors you might want to consider are
their view of history, their ideological principles, their behavior
while in power, their immediate political goals, as well as their
respective geopolitical situations. Given that we are looking at the
Soviet Union in the 1930s in some depth for our research project, maybe
we could focus more on Germany.
let us agree from the start that were we to rank all people who have
ever lived in terms of their moral worth, Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin
would be way down near the bottom. But I still hope that our
discussion can go beyond a debate over whether Hitler or Stalin was the
bigger [expletive deleted].
2. The Great Depression
is hard to underestimate the disruption caused in Europe by the Great
Depression. To what extent did the policies pursued by various
governments of Europe in response to this economic crisis set the stage
for the diplomatic and political crises of the late 1930s?
3. The Paralysis of the West
has not been kind to Neville Chamberlain, the British prime minister
who is often held personally responsible for “appeasing” Hitler’s
expansionist policies at the Munich Conference in 1938. But the factors
leading to the Czechoslovak crisis, the topic of conference, did not
emerge overnight. Was the disaster at Munich the result of
Chamberlain’s naiveté/incompetence/vacillation, or was he dealt a bad
hand, given the previous failures to confront the Germans after the
militarization of the Rhine, the German intervention in the Spanish
Civil War, or the Anschluss? Why did the West not mount a more determined challenge against the Germans in the 1930s?